Coding a Welsh language robot

As part of our mission to promote the acquisition of computing skills amongst Welsh speakers, the Language Technologies Unit has been developing a series of computer science lessons aimed at primary school children.

The basis of these resources is the Raspberry Pi foundation’s collection of Turing Test lessonsrobot. The resources were originally created in English and placed on the foundation’s website under an open license, allowing for free distribution and sharing.

Our contribution has been to translate the whole course into Welsh, and to place it on GitHub, so that it can be made accessible to the public to use or adapt towards any purpose that they wish. We’ve also created a brand new lesson for the course that is specifically geared towards Welsh speaking children. This special lesson introduces children to some of the resources of the Language Resources Portal, including Welsh language text-to-speech, Cysill Ar-lein (online spelling and grammar checker for Welsh), language detection and parts of speech tagger, all in a fun and easy format.

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Children from Garndolbenmaen Primary school enjoying their coding lesson with Dewi Bryn Jones, Patrick Robertson and Rapiro the Robot.

The lesson was trialled by Dewi Bryn Jones and Patrick Robertson at Garndolbenmaen Primary School in March, and was considered a resounding success. See this previous blog post for a video created by the children to learn more about the day’s events.

All of the resources are available on GitHub under an open license here. These include the three original lessons that were translated, the special lesson on adding Welsh features to the robot and also instructions for setting up for teachers and students.

Here is the lesson structure:


And you can find the special Welsh lesson here: